New research has confirmed what we all knew, all along: culture and recognition is more important to workers than a big, fat salary.

A survey by the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) found that the majority of British workers were more concerned about their working environment than they were about their take-home pay, reports.

Of the 2,000 employees questioned, eight in ten claimed they would refuse a salary increase if it meant compromising culture. When asked what would make them happy, responsibility, recognition and good relationships with co-workers came top – beating pay.

Enjoying the role, getting on with the boss and ‘an easy commute’ were similarly cited as reasons why employees remain in their current position.

Decent pay was ranked in sixth place. Interestingly, the survey discovered that a third of people have left well-paying roles chiefly due to pressure and the lack of recognition.

AAT chief executive Mark Farrar added that many respondents claimed earning more money would impact their work-life balance, meaning less time to spend with their families.

“Of course, life dictates that we earn as much as we can to maintain or improve our circumstances, but most deemed working with good people or in a role they feel valued in as more important than the salary,” he told

“The results show that, when it comes to working happiness, money is far from the driving factor for most of us.”